L Faucitano

Université du Québec, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada

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Publications (81)84.3 Total impact

  • Meat Science 01/2015; 99:153. DOI:10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.07.006 · 2.23 Impact Factor
  • M. Gil · L. Faucitano · G. Talbot · N. Devillers · L. Saucier
    Meat Science 01/2015; 99. DOI:10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.07.016 · 2.23 Impact Factor
  • L M Rocha · A Dionne · L Saucier · E Nannoni · L Faucitano
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    ABSTRACT: The objectives of this study were to assess the relationship between blood lactate variation measured at the plant, and pork quality variation on a large sample size and under commercial preslaughter handling conditions. A total of 600 pigs were randomly chosen on arrival at a commercial slaughter plant and blood samples taken from the ear vein at unloading (UN), after lairage (LA), in the restrainer (RE; before stunning) and at exsanguination (EX) were analysed for lactate content using a Lactate Scout Analyzer (LSA). In order to have a large range of measures, pigs were distributed into two groups; one kept in lairage overnight (G1) and the other for 2 to 3 h (G2) before slaughter. Meat quality was assessed in the Longissimus thoracis (LT), Semimembranosus (SM) and Adductor (AD) muscles by measuring the pH 30 min postmortem (pH1) and at 24 h postmortem (pHu), the colour and the drip loss. Blood lactate levels did not differ between G1 and G2 (P>0.05). A reduced muscle lactate and glucose contents (P=0.02 and P=0.004, respectively) resulting in a lower (P<0.001) glycolytic potential (GP) was observed in the LT muscle of G1 pigs when compared with G2 loins. In the LT muscle of G1 pigs, the lower GP resulted in an increased pHu (r=-0.67; P<0.001), decreased drip loss (r=0.57; P<0.001) and darker colour (r=0.50; P<0.001) compared with G2. In both G1 and G2 pigs, the lower GP was correlated to higher pHu value in the SM and AD muscles (r=-0.73; P<0.001). The greatest correlation was observed in G2 between blood lactate levels at LA and pHu value of the SM and AD muscles (r=0.46 and r=0.44, respectively; P<0.001 for both muscles). The second greatest correlation was found between blood lactate levels at EX and pH1 value in the SM muscle in both groups (r=-0.37 and r=-0.41, respectively; P<0.001 for both groups). Based on the results of this study, it appears that blood lactate levels, as measured by the LSA, reliably reflect the physiological response of pigs to perimortem stress and may help explain the variation in pork quality.
    animal 11/2014; 9(04):1-8. DOI:10.1017/S1751731114002766 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Single and combined effects of ractopamine supplementation (RAC, 7.5 vs. 0 ppm), castration method (surgical castration: SC vs. immuno-castration: IM) and genotype (genotype A: GA vs. GB containing 25% or 50% Piétrain) were determined on longissimus muscle (LM) fiber traits and quality of pork (n=512). RAC increased fiber IIX cross-sectional area (P=0.009) and decreased glycolytic potential (P=0.02) and pork tenderness (P<0.001). Fiber traits indicated that LM of IM pigs was more oxidative (P<0.05) and meat had slightly higher (P=0.04) off-flavor score and WBSF than SC. LM from GB pigs was paler (P<0.05) and had greater (P<0.05) glycolytic potential, IIX fiber cross sectional area and pork off-flavor than GA. RAC supplementation, castration method and genotype or their combination affected some fiber traits and some quality parameters but differences reported were small indicating these treatments or their combination could be used without major prejudice to meat quality. Crown Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Meat Science 10/2014; 102C:27-34. DOI:10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.10.027 · 2.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: https://asas.confex.com/asas/mw14/webprogram/Paper2929.html
    ADSA-ASAS Midwest Meeting - 2014; 03/2014
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    ABSTRACT: https://asas.confex.com/asas/mw14/webprogram/Paper2783.html
    ADSA-ASAS Midwest Meeting - 2014; 03/2014
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    ABSTRACT: The effects of season (winter vs. summer), transport time (T: 6, 12 and 18 h) and truck compartment (C) on skin bruise score and meat quality were evaluated in 384 pigs distributed across the top front (C1), top back (C4), middle front (C5) and bottom rear (C10) compartments. Bruise score was higher (P = 0.01) in winter than in summer. A T x C interaction was found for pH(u) value in the longissimus thoracis (LT) muscle and for drip loss in the LT and semimembranosus (SM) muscles, with higher (P < 0.001) pHu being recorded in the LT muscle and lower drip loss in the LT and SM muscles (P < 0.001 and P = 0.01, respectively) of pigs located in C10 following 18 h of transport. In summer, higher (P = 0.03) pHu values were found in the LT muscle of pigs transported in C4 and lower drip loss in the LT and SM muscles (P = 0.04 and P = 0.03, respectively) of pigs located in C10. The results of this study suggest that, while skin bruises are only affected by season, the effects of longer transport time and winter temperatures on meat quality can be aggravated by the compartment location.
    Canadian Journal of Animal Science 03/2014; 94(1):71-78. DOI:10.4141/cjas2013-136 · 0.98 Impact Factor
  • Meat Science 01/2014; 96(1):120. DOI:10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.05.047 · 2.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: L. 2013. Welfare and carcass and meat quality of pigs being transported for two hours using two vehicle types during two seasons of the year. Can. J. Anim. Sci. 93: 43Á55. A total of 3756 pigs were transported for 2 h in summer and winter using a ''pot-belly'' trailer (PB) and a hydraulic double-decked truck (DD) in order to assess the effect of vehicle design on animal welfare and carcass and meat quality. Animal welfare was assessed in randomly selected barrows by measuring heart rate of pigs and lactate and creatine phospho-kinase (CPK) concentrations in exsanguination blood. Skin damage was scored and meat quality was evaluated in the longissimus dorsi (LD), semimembranosus (SM) and adductor (AD) muscles. Heart rates in winter were higher (PB0.01) during transport, at unloading and in lairage. Blood CPK and lactate concentrations at slaughter were higher (PB0.05 and PB0.01, respectively) in pigs transported on the PB trailer. Bruises increased in winter (PB0.001) and in pigs from the DD truck (P B0.05). The pHu was higher (P B0.01) in all muscles and L* value was lower (P B0.05) in the LD muscle from pigs transported in the PB trailer. Overall, the results of this study indicate that the type of vehicle, animal location in the truck and the season affect the welfare of pigs during transport with clear consequences on skin bruises and pork quality variation.
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    ABSTRACT: In each of 12 weeks between May and September, 2011, two identical pot-belly trailers were loaded with 208 pigs each and transported to the slaughter plant (2 h trip). One of the two trailers was equipped with a water sprinkling system (WS) installed inside the truck compartments whereas the other one transported pigs under standard commercial conditions (control, CONT). The water sprinkling system was activated for 5 min in the stationary truck, both at the farm (at the end of loading) and at the plant (immediately before unloading). Blood lactate levels at exsanguination, carcass and meat quality traits were assessed on a sub-sample of randomly selected pigs (n¼384/576). Exsanguination lactate levels were lower (P¼ 0.02) in WS pigs compared to CONT, regardless of ambient temperature. Concurrently, the pH value of the Longissimus dorsi (LD) muscle at 1 h post-mortem (pH1) was greater (P¼ 0.009) in WS pigs compared to CONT, regardless of ambient temperature. The effect of water sprinkling interacted with location inside the truck and ambient temperature. Water sprinkling reduced exsanguina-tion lactate levels in pigs transported in compartments 5 and 8 (which are located at the front and at the rear of the middle deck, respectively) such that lower lactate was observed in compartment 5 at 15 1C (P¼ 0.03) and 18 1C (P¼ 0.009), and in compartment 8 at 22 1C (P¼ 0.03) and 25 1C (P¼ 0.04). In compartment 5, the pH1 value in the LD muscle of WS pigs was higher than in the CONT group at 18 1C (P¼0.002), 22 1C (Po0.001) and 25 1C (P¼ 0.005); pH1 in the SM muscle of WS pigs was lower at 18 1C (P¼ 0.01) and 22 1C (P¼ 0.02); and drip loss in the WS group was lower than in the CONT group at 22 1C (P¼ 0.01), and at 25 1C (P¼ 0.02). No significant effect was detected in compartment 4 (which is located at the rear of the top floor), or in compartment 9 (which is located at the front to the bottom deck). The results of this study showed that the sprinkling protocol applied was effective, particularly in some trailer compartments, in reducing stress response and improving pork quality of pigs transported in pot-bellied trailers.
    Livestock Science 12/2013; 160(1). DOI:10.1016/j.livsci.2013.11.022 · 1.10 Impact Factor
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    Canadian Journal of Animal Science 12/2013; 93(4):461-470. DOI:10.4141/cjas2013-166 · 0.98 Impact Factor
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    S Goumon · J A Brown · L Faucitano · R Bergeron · T Crowe · M L Connor · H W Gonyou
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    ABSTRACT: The process of transportation can be seen as a succession of stressors, from which pigs may not have time to recover before slaughter. The aim of this study was to determine the extent to which the duration of the rest time given to near-market weight pigs after an initial exposure to exercise affected their recovery from subsequent exercise. Eighteen groups of 3 gilts were exercised (Ex1) through a standard handling course, including two 19° ramps, and then held in a holding pen for either 35 (RT35), 75 (RT75) or 150 (RT150) min (rest period 1, RP1). Afterwards, pigs were exercised a second time (Ex2) and left to rest for 150 min. Recovery from Ex2 (rest period 2, RP2) was assessed using measures of heart rate (HR), respiratory rate (RR), skin temperature (ST) and posture. Repeated measures and regression analysis were used to analyze the data. For RT75 pigs, there were no detrimental effects of Ex2 on HR, RR and handling time (P > 0.05, for all) during the exercise and recovery periods. ST during Ex2 was greater than ST during Ex1 (P < 0.001), while ST during RP1 did not differ from ST during RP2 (P > 0.05). Doubling the rest period did not provide any more beneficial effects in regards to RR and HR (P > 0.05 for both) during Ex2 and RP2 compared to RT75 pigs, as shown by the similar latencies to recover for these 2 variables. However, ST did not increase between exercises and RT150 pigs required less time to complete the handling course during Ex2. The results show that a lack of rest after an initial exposure to exercise made pigs more susceptible to stress during Ex2 and RP2 as demonstrated by greater (P < 0.001 for all) HR, RR and ST during RP2 compared to RP1 and Ex2 compared to Ex1. When given more than 35 min to rest during RP2, RT35 pigs eventually recovered. Latencies of recovery for HR, ST, RR and posture were all greater (P < 0.05 for HR, ST and RR, and P < 0.001 for posture) than those obtained for RT75 and RT150 pigs. This study highlights that if pigs are not initially given enough rest to recover from exercise, a subsequent exposure to the same exercise will cause an increase in these physiological variables during exercise and recovery. Further research is needed to investigate factors contributing to the quality of rest, with a particular focus on conditions not allowing a proper rest on the truck or in lairage.
    Journal of Animal Science 10/2013; 91(12). DOI:10.2527/jas.2012-6184 · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Welfare and meat quality of market weight pigs may be negatively affected by transport duration and environmental temperatures, which vary considerably between seasons. This study evaluated the effects of 3 transport durations (6, 12 and 18 h) on the physiology and behavior of pigs in summer and winter in western Canada. Market weight pigs were transported using a pot-belly trailer at an average loading density of 0.375 m&sup2;/100 kg. Four replicates of each transport duration were conducted during each season. Heart rate and gastrointestinal tract temperature (GTT) were monitored from loading to unloading in 16 pigs from 4 selected trailer compartments (n = 96 groups, total of 384 animals, BW = 120.8 ± 0.4 kg), namely top front (C1), top back (C4), middle front (C5) and bottom rear (C10). Behavior was recorded for pigs (948 and 924 animals, in summer and winter, respectively) in C1, C4 and C5 during transportation (standing, sitting, lying) and during 90 min in lairage (sitting, lying, drinking and latency to rest) for pigs in all 4 compartments. Transport was split into 7 periods: loading, pre-travel (PT), initial travel (IT), pre-arrival 1 (PA1) and 2 (PA2), unloading and lairage. During IT and PA2, pigs spent less time lying in winter than in summer (P < 0.05 and P < 0.05, respectively). During PA1, PA2 and unloading, a greater (P < 0.001) heart rate was found in pigs transported in winter compared to summer. During PA2, pigs subjected to the 18 h transport treatment in winter had a greater (P < 0.05) GTT than the other groups. In lairage, pigs transported for 18 h in winter drank more (P < 0.001) and took longer to rest (P < 0.01) than pigs from other groups. During PA1, pigs transported for 18 h had the greatest GTT (P < 0.001). At unloading, pigs transported for 6 h had the lowest GTT (P < 0.001). In lairage, pigs transported for 18 h spent less time lying than those transported for 6 h or 12 h (P < 0.001). These results suggest that in winter, pigs increased their metabolism and were reluctant to rest on cold floors. Pigs transported for 18 h in winter showed greater evidence of thirst. It may be concluded that under western Canadian climatic conditions, long transports (18 h) in cold weather appear to be more detrimental to pig's welfare.
    Journal of Animal Science 08/2013; 91(10). DOI:10.2527/jas.2012-6081 · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of trailer design on the stress responses and meat quality traits of 3 different pig crosses: 50% Pietrain breeding with HALNn (50Nn), 50% Pietrain breeding with HALNN (50NN) and 25% Pietrain breeding with HALNN genotype (25NN). Market barrows (n=360), as a subset of 12 trailer loads of pigs, were transported from farm to slaughter on 6 dates in 2009 for 45min in either a pot-belly (PB) or flat-deck (FD) trailer, with 120 pigs/genetic group being represented. Temperature (T) and relative humidity (RH) were recorded by data loggers mounted in both trailers. Behaviours and handler interventions were video-taped at loading, unloading and in lairage. At exsanguination, blood samples were collected for the assessment of lactate, cortisol, creatine kinase (CK), haptoglobin and Pig-MAP concentrations. Meat quality was measured in the longissimus dorsi (LD), semimembranosus (SM) and adductor (AD) muscles of all pigs. Temperatures were warmer in compartments 6 and 11 at loading (P<0.001), compartment 11 during travelling (P=0.05), and in compartment 5 at unloading (P=0.01) of the PB trailer. Pigs unloaded from the FD trailer overlapped more (P<0.001), whereas (P<0.001) the frequency of jamming was noted for pigs unloaded from the PB trailer. Pigs with 50% Pietrain genetics overlapped and jammed more (P<0.001) than pigs with 25% Pietrain genetics, regardless of HAL status. Greater (P=0.03) CK levels were found in 50Nn pigs transported in the PB trailer, while 50Nn and 50NN pigs had greater (P=0.028) lactate levels than 25NN pigs. Carcasses from 50Nn and 50NN pigs were leaner (P=0.04), and the skin damage score was lower (P=0.04) in 25NN carcasses. Overlap-type bruises were greater (P=0.02) in pigs transported in the FD trailer. Pigs transported in the PB trailer had greater (P=0.05) pHu in the SM and AD muscles (P=0.013). Except for pHu in the SM muscle, all meat quality parameters were affected by the Hal gene (P=0.04). The use of a PB trailer for short distance transportation of pigs to slaughter negatively affected stress responses and meat quality. The greater proportion of Pietrain genetics in the selection resulted in leaner carcasses, but also in pigs being more difficult to handle. Crossbreeding appeared to have a greater impact on animal welfare and meat quality than vehicle type, but trailer type may emphasize these negative genotype-related defects.
    Livestock Science 08/2013; 157(1):234-244. DOI:10.1016/j.livsci.2013.07.004 · 1.10 Impact Factor
  • 2013 CSAS-CMSA Joint Annual Meeting; 06/2013
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    ABSTRACT: Infrared thermography (IRT) body temperature readings were taken in the ocular region of 258 pigs immediately before slaughter. Levels of lactate were measured in blood taken in the restrainer. Meat quality was assessed in the longissimus dorsi (LD), semimembranosus (SM), and adductor muscles. Ocular IRT (IROT) temperature was correlated with blood lactate levels (r=0.20; P=0.001), with pH taken 1hour postmortem (pH1: r=-0.18; P=0.03) and drip loss (r=0.20; P=0.02) in the LD muscle, and with pH1 in the SM muscle (r=-0.20; P=0.02). Potentially, IROT may be a useful tool to assess the physiological conditions of pigs at slaughter and predict the variation of important meat quality traits. However, the magnitude of the correlations is rather low, so a further development of image capture technique and further studies under more variable preslaughter conditions ensuring a larger pork quality variation are needed.
    Meat Science 06/2013; 95(3):616-620. DOI:10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.06.003 · 2.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of ractopamine supplementation, castration method and their interaction on the behavioral and physiological response to pre-slaughter stress and carcass and meat quality of 2 Piétrain genotypes. A total of 1,488 male pigs (115±5 kg live weight) were distributed according to a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design. The first factor was ractopamine supplementation with 2 groups of pigs (376 and 380 pigs each) receiving 7.5 ppm of ractopamine (RAC) or not (NRAC) in their diet during the last 28 d of the finishing period. The second factor was castration method with 744 surgically castrates (SC) and 744 immunized males (IM), and the third factor was the genotype with 2 crossbreds containing 50% (genotype A; GA; n = 744) or 25% (genotype B; GB; n = 744) Piétrain genetics. Surgical castration took place at 2 d of age, while immunization against gonadotropin-releasing factor (GnRF) was performed through 2 subcutaneous injections of GnRF analog (Improvest, 2 mL) at 10 and 4 wk before slaughter. At loading more vocal stimulation was needed by the handler to drive GB pigs forward through the farm alley (P = 0.01) and RAC-fed-GB pigs through the ramp (P = 0.02). Feeding RAC to IM increased the number of fights in lairage compared with SC (P = 0.03). Feeding RAC shortened fighting bouts compared with NRAC pigs (P = 0.05). The pigs SC-GA showed a greater gastro-intestinal tract temperature during unloading (P = 0.05) and lairage time (P = 0.03). Blood creatine kinase (CK) levels were greater (P = 0.04) in SC compared to IM and no difference was found in the levels of stress hormones in urine collected post-mortem. Dressing yield was greater (P = 0.01) in RAC and SC-GB pigs. Carcasses from RAC pigs and IM were leaner than those from NRAC and SC pigs (P < 0.001 and P = 0.002, respectively). Feeding RAC to IM increased drip loss in the Longissimus muscle (LM; P = 0.05). Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) values were slightly greater in the LM from RAC-GB pigs and from IM compared to SC (P = 0.01 and P <0.001, respectively) and in the Semimembranosus muscle of RAC pigs (P = 0.006). In conclusion, immunization against GnRF more than the use of Piétrain genotypes appears to be a viable alternative to the use of ractopamine, as it seems to promote production of lean carcasses without compromising animal welfare and pork quality.
    Journal of Animal Science 05/2013; 91(8). DOI:10.2527/jas.2012-6058 · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    S Goumon · L Faucitano · R Bergeron · T Crowe · M L Connor · H W Gonyou
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    ABSTRACT: Three experiments, each using 280 pigs, were conducted in a simulated compartment to test the effect of angle of entrance (AOE) to the ramp (90°, 60°, 30° or 0°), ramp slope (0°, 16°, 21° or 26°), and an initial 20 cm step associated with 16° or 21° ramp slopes on the ease of handling, heart rate (HR) and behavior of near market-weight pigs during unloading. Heart rate (pigs and handler), unloading time, handler's interventions and pigs' reaction were monitored. The results of the first experiment show that using a 90° AOE had detrimental effects on ease of handling (P < 0.05), pig's HR (P < 0.05) and behavior (P < 0.05). The 0° and 30° AOE appeared to improve the ease of unloading, while the 60° AOE had an intermediate effect. The 30° AOE appeared to be preferable, because pigs moved at this angle balked less frequently (P < 0.01) and required less manipulation (P < 0.05) than pigs moved with a 0° AOE. The results of the second experiment show that the use of a flat ramp led to the easiest unloading as demonstrated by the lower number of balks (P < 0.001) when pigs were moved to the ramp and the less frequent use of paddle (P = 0.001) or voice (P < 0.001) on the ramp, compared to the other treatments. However, the flat ramp did not differ from the 21° ramp in many of the variables reflecting ease of handling, which may be explained by the difference in configuration between the ramps. The results also show that the use of the steepest ramp slope had the most detrimental effect on pig's balking and backing up behavior (P < 0.001) and handling (touches, slaps and pushes) (P < 0.05, for all) when moved to the ramp, and on unloading time (P < 0.01). No differences in pig HR (P < 0.05) and ease of handling on the ramp (P < 0.05) were found between a 26° and a 16° ramp slope, suggesting that the length of the ramp may be one of the factors which make unloading more difficult. The results of the last experiment show that a step associated with a ramp made unloading physically more demanding at both 16° and 21° for the handler (P < 0.001) and pigs on the ramp (P < 0.05) as demonstrated by their greater HR. The greater difficulty of handling (P < 0.01), pig's reluctance to move (P < 0.05) and the increase in HR (P < 0.05) in pigs moved toward the 16° ramp with a step suggests that pigs perceived this ramp as more psychologically challenging. Making a few changes in terms of the design of the ramp could improve the efficiency of handling and reduce stress in pigs.
    Journal of Animal Science 05/2013; 91(8). DOI:10.2527/jas.2012-6083 · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Transportation of pigs to slaughter has the potential to negatively impact animal welfare, particularly in hot temperatures and over long-transport durations. The objective of this experiment was to determine if season and location within vehicle influenced the behavior of market-weight pigs during loading, transit, unloading, and lairage after a long-distance trip to slaughter. On a pot-belly truck, 1,170 pigs were transported (n = 195 pigs/wk in 7 experimental compartments) for 8 h to a commercial abattoir in summer (6 wk) and winter (5 wk). Pig behavior was observed at loading, in transit, at unloading, and in lairage. Handler intervention at loading was observed, and the time to load and unload was recorded. Although season did not (P = 0.91) affect loading time, more prods (P = 0.014) were necessary to load pigs in summer than winter. Loading in winter also tended to be longer (P = 0.071) into compartments involving internal ramps. In transit, more pigs (P = 0.025) were standing in winter compared to summer. Unloading took longer (P < 0.006) in winter than in summer, and from compartments where pigs had to negotiate ramps and 180° turns. Furthermore, pigs in summer experienced more slipping (P = 0.032), falling (P = 0.004), overlapping (P < 0.001), and walking backwards (P < 0.001) than pigs in winter. Pigs unloading from compartments with internal ramps slipped more (P < 0.0001) than other pigs. Season influenced latency to rest in lairage, with those transported in summer resting sooner (P < 0.0001) than those in winter. In conclusion, season and location within trucks differentially affect pig behavior before, during, and after long-distance transportation. Differences in lighting and temperature between seasons, and the inclusion of internal ramps within vehicles, may play important roles in the welfare of pigs transported to slaughter.
    Journal of Animal Science 03/2013; 91(6). DOI:10.2527/jas.2012-6006 · 1.92 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

707 Citations
84.30 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2015
    • Université du Québec
      Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
  • 2006–2014
    • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
      • Dairy and Swine Research and Development Centre (DSRDC)
      Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    • University of Guelph
      • Department of Animal and Poultry Science
      XIA, Ontario, Canada
  • 2009
    • Institut Marqués, Spain, Barcelona
      Barcino, Catalonia, Spain
  • 1998
    • IRTA Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology
      Barcino, Catalonia, Spain